1. Yahweh said this to me, 'Go and buy a linen waistcloth and put it round your waist. But do not dip it in water.'
2. And so, as Yahweh had ordered, I bought a waistcloth and put it round my waist.
3. A second time the word of Yahweh came to me,
4. 'Take the waistcloth that you have bought and are wearing round your waist. Up, go to the Euphrates and hide it there in a hole in the rock.'
5. So I went and hid it by the Euphrates as Yahweh had ordered me.
6. A long time later, Yahweh said to me, 'Up, go to the Euphrates and fetch the waistcloth I ordered you to hide there.'
7. So I went to the Euphrates, and I searched, and I took the waistcloth from the place where I had hidden it. And there was the waistcloth ruined, no use for anything.
8. Then the word of Yahweh was addressed to me as follows,
9. 'Yahweh says this, "In the same way I shall ruin the pride of Judah, the immense pride of Jerusalem.
10. This evil people, these people who refuse to listen to my words, who follow their own stubborn inclinations and run after other gods, serving and worshipping them -- this people will become like this waistcloth, no good for anything.
11. For just as a waistcloth clings to a man's waist, so I made the whole House of Israel and the whole House of Judah cling to me, Yahweh declares, to be my people, my glory, my honour and my pride. But they have not listened."
12. 'You will also say this to them, "Yahweh, God of Israel, says this: Any jug can be filled with wine." And if they answer you, "Do you think we do not know that any jug can be filled with wine?"
13. you are to say, "Yahweh says this: Look, I shall fill all the inhabitants of this country, the kings who occupy the throne of David, the priests, the prophets and all the citizens of Jerusalem, with drunkenness.
14. Then I shall smash them one against the other, parents and children all together, Yahweh declares. Mercilessly, relentlessly, pitilessly, I shall destroy them." '
15. Listen and pay attention, do not be proud: Yahweh is speaking!
16. Give glory to Yahweh your God before the darkness comes, before your feet stumble on the darkened mountains. You hope for light, but he will turn it to shadow dark as death, will change it to blackness.
17. If you do not listen to this warning, I shall weep in secret for your pride; my eyes will weep bitterly and stream with tears, for Yahweh's flock is being led into captivity.
18. Tell the king and the queen mother, 'Sit in a lower place, since your glorious crown has fallen from your head.
19. The towns of the Negeb are shut off with no one to give access to them. All Judah has been deported, deported wholesale.'
20. Raise your eyes and look at these now coming from the north. Where is the flock once entrusted to you, the flock which was your pride?
21. What will you say when they come and punish you, you yourself having taught them? Against you, in the lead, will come your friends. Then will not anguish grip you as it grips a woman in labour?
22. And should you ask yourself, 'Why is all this happening to me?' it is because of your great guilt that your skirts have been pulled up and you have been manhandled.
23. Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? And you, can you do right, being so accustomed to wrong?
24. 'I shall scatter you like chaff on the desert wind.
25. This is your share, the part allotted you, from me, Yahweh declares, because you have forgotten me and put your trust in Delusion.
26. I am the one who pulls your skirts up over your face to let your shame be seen.
27. Oh! Your adulteries, your shrieks of pleasure, your vile prostitution! On the hills, in the fields, I have seen your Horrors. Jerusalem, disaster is coming for you! How much longer till you are made clean?'